Hearings being conducted into the Deepwater Horizon explosion by the US Coast Guard and federal agencies, are turning up the proverbial can of worms. In the past few days, Transocean employees have come forward to talk about poor maintenance on the rig. Now the, Houston Chronicle is reporting that just two days before the tragic explosion, Halliburton warned BP that there was a serious risk of natural gas escaping from the Macondo well if the company continued to persist with the existing well-plan.
The warning was contained in a report that was sent to officials at BP on 18 April. Both BP officials on the semisubmersible rig, as well as on land had access to the report. The report contained several recommendations about the cement job that had been done on the well. That cement job had come under scrutiny since the explosion. Halliburton had come under the microscope for possibly performing a shoddy job on the cement work. However, it now seems like BP ignored warnings about potentially dangerous conditions that could increase the risk of an explosion.
The hearing was dominated by both Halliburton and BP, blaming each other for the explosions. BP lawyers read out e-mails sent by Halliburton officials, suggesting that Halliburton’s concerns about the oil well had been resolved. Other questions have involved whether BP risked the safety of its workers and the environment by going ahead with drilling even after a leak was discovered on the blowout preventer. The malfunction was on one of the control pods on the blowout preventer. Federal rules dictate that if there are such problems on any component of the blowout preventer, drilling must be stopped until the problem was fixed.
The maritime lawyers at Schechter, Shaffer & Harris, L.L.P., Accident & Injury Lawyers represent injured oil rig workers, fishing vessel crews, cruise line crew members, barge and tug operators and other maritime workers in accidents in Texas and across the globe.